In the used car market of today, the seller is the king. Due to the recession, cash for clunkers, and the Japanese earthquake and subsequent tsunami removing a good number of previously-owned cars from the market, demand continues to outpace supply.
However, that does not mean that a seller can afford to simply put a “For Sale” sign on the windshield of her vehicle and leave it parked in the driveway. No, to take full advantage of today’s high-priced used car market, a seller has got to properly prepare her vehicle for sale. The more you get from the sale, the more you’ll have as down payment for your second chance car loan.
Thankfully, Forbes has recently released a roadmap for sellers to follow as they get their steeds ready for the market.
The first step is probably the most obvious, clean the dang thing. A seller must vacuum and shampoo those parts that need it. eBay Motor’s Manager Clayton Stanfield says that the appearance of a vehicle can make or break a sale. “Thoroughly cleaning your vehicle is absolutely crucial — it’s one of the simplest things you can do. You want to make sure that your potential buyers are seeing your vehicle at its best,” Stanfield said.
Pricing the car correctly is vital as well. Buyers research cars as they are shopping and sellers must do the same as they sell. Kelly Blue Book has an online site sellers can use to help them determine the market value of their vehicle.
Preparing copies of the maintenance and repair records is also a good step, assuming the owner has been diligent in having the vehicle serviced on a regular schedule. If the vehicle is still under an extended warranty, a copy of that can increase the car’s price quite a bit.